Toshi-Aline Ohta Seeger died Tuesday night at her home at Beacon, NY. She was 91. Here's how her grandson, Tao Rodriguez-Seeger, summed up her marriage to America's most famous folksinger: "Without my grandmother, there would be no Pete Seeger the way people understand it," Rodriguez-Seeger said. "That's not an exaggeration. She kept everything working so that he could focus on the world-saving, civil rights, anti-nukes, Clearwater - all of the projects that my grandfather worked on." A few years ago, Pete recorded these thoughts about his wife of 70 years, and her extraordinary family background: Mark Moss, editor of Sing Out! magazine has...

It's been a while since we've featured a music video. This one comes from Korean-born, London-based electronic music producer Postino (real name: Junho Lee). I think of it as a mashup of Psy and our old friend Brett Domino, Best viewed full screen. [Video link] Director:  Will Kindrick. H/T: the engrossing Stellar blog....

Consider taking in the annual l'Arche Cape Breton Springfest at the World Trade and Convention Center, Membertou. It's an evening of stories and songs  by the l'Arche troupe, together with delicious desserts and an auction featuring arts and crafts by l'Arche folks, and goods donated by l'Arche supporters. L’Arche Cape Breton will share their gift of music and storytelling, while illustrating their incredible zest for life. An evening to remember for just $15. Tickets at Wentworth Perk and the Cape Breton Curiosity Shop. If you aren't familiar with l'Arche, here's a wee introduction: Director and videographer: Naomi Cousins; Producer: Mary MacDougall; Artist: Anil Kumar;...

When the Rollings Stones played the Halifax Commons in September, 2006, Mick Jagger impressed the crowd by using the term "Haligonian," and even pronouncing "Newfoundland" correctly. Forty years into his career, the rock superstar still had the professionalism to get every local concert detail exactly right. I have never seen an effort to sprinkle a touring show with meaningful local references to match what Old Crow Medicine Show frontman Ketch Secor displayed last night at the Nashville-based, alt-bluegrass band's Membertou show in Sydney. "It's intimidating to play the violin in a city that has a 60-foot-high statue of one," Secor told the...

Brilliant! Credits for the first music video ever produced in space include guitar and tenor vocals by Chris Hadfield (recorded on the International Space Station), plus terrestrial video production by Hadfield's son Evan and TV producer Andrew Tidby, music production and mixing by music producer Joe Corcoran, with piano arrangements by Canadian singer-songwriter Emm Gryner. "Space Oddity" was written by David Bowie and first performed by him in 1969, when Hadfield was 10 years old. Who knows what this may inspire in the next generation of space enthusiasts....

Here's a nice touch: As part of the promotion for the Savoy Theatre's forthcoming production of Les Misérables (May 24 to 29), the Cape Breton Post and Seaside Communications have put together a video describing the Savoy's fascinating history and architecture: The narrator, Steve "Beak" MacDonald, pretty much grew up with the Savoy. His parents, Scotchie and Mary Marsh MacDonald, were major supporters of the theatre when it hosted Rotary Club musicals in the 1960s and '70s. Actors, musicians, and crew members associated with the productions were often billeted in the MacDonalds' home on Sydney's Wentworth Park. Here's an image of the theatre entrance...

  From the opening strains of "Home I'll Be," played as a haunting slow air by Ashley MacIsaac, to the final chords of the same Rita MacNeil tune sung by the large ensemble of musicians  who gathered last night in her honor, the tribute concert organized by Joella Foulds and Max MacDonald was magnificent. A few highlights: No one plays Cape Breton fiddle better than Ashley MacIsaac, and the slow air displays the instrument's greatest emotive power. One tends to think first of Rita's lyrics, but the concert brought home the power and grace of her melodies. Bette MacDonald was hilarious as always, but Maynard Morrison's...

The late Janet Moore, the founder of l'Arche Cape Breton who was profiled here on her death in 2010, was a huge fan of Rita MacNeil. Janet's friend Mary MacDougall arranged for the two to meet at Rita's Tea Room on her 60th birthday, in 2007. Jenn Power, Atlantic Regional Co-ordinator for l'Arche (and my daughter-in-law) described the event on her blog. Those of us who love Janet were more than a little apprehensive as we prepared for the celebration. Janet is getting old, and showing her age. As with so many people with Down Syndrome, dementia is slowly creeping in and stealing...